It is one of the simplest and most organised ways to ensure your funeral wishes are carried out

Common Questions

Howard & Gannon Funerals have built an excellent reputation for providing the very best funeral care to the families and local communities we serve.

If the death occurs at home, you need to notify the doctor. If the death occurs in a hospital or nursing home you should call family members first and then contact us for advice and we can guide you through the next steps.

A coroner is involved in a sudden or unexpected death, an accidental death, or if a doctor is unable to establish the cause of death. The coroner must establish a cause of death and this may require a post mortem examination.

After the cause of death has been established the Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC) may be able to pay compensation to the dependents of accident victims and make a contribution to funeral expenses.

Howard & Gannon Funerals offer a large range of caskets and urns available in our show room, so you can compare styles and prices. There are many options available now, from solid timber, veneer or even personalised caskets with vinyl art.

Hopefully this is something that has been discussed with the deceased at some time. If not, it is the family who decide what to do. Howard & Gannon Funerals can assist you by providing more information as required.

» Burial involves buying a burial plot, paying an interment fee and usually buying a headstone.

» Cremation provides some flexibility, as ashes can be kept in an urn or scattered where the family or deceased felt appropriate.

The choice of whether to attend a funeral should be left up to the child and their parents. Dealing with the death of someone close to you is difficult at any age. For some people having their child attend the ceremony is crucial in helping the child come to terms with their loss, and being part of the ceremony enables the parent and child to share their grief together and provides comfort. However again this is a personal choice and there is no right or wrong answer.

Here at Howard & Gannon Funerals we a have a facility that allows parents and their children to view the ceremony from a separate room if required.

Copy with Grief

Grief is an intense and personal experience. It is a response to the loss of a loved one and the intensity of the grief you feel is unique to each individual and the circumstances of the death. Every loss we experience will be different. We understand that the funeral service is just the beginning of your journey. We are here to help you cope with your loss and we can assist you in finding the resources to help you through the stages of grief.

  • Listen: Allow the person grieving to talk, recall memories, perhaps over and over again.
  • Be aware: Working through grief is necessary. It can take a long time and you can not expect people to move on before they are ready. Show sensitivity, people grieving need support not judgement.
  • Show understanding: Allow the person grieving to openly express their feelings. Reassure them that what they are experiencing is normal and part of healing.
  • Be patient: Mourning the loss of a loved one takes a long time. Remember that grief may become more intense at special times like birthdays, Christmas, holidays and anniversaries.


Once again this is personal choice. Many people find viewing the deceased helps them in the grieving process, and in some cultures spending time with the deceased before the ceremony is important. It can help people come to terms with their loss, and can be a time to express emotions and feelings.

Howard & Gannon Funerals offers private and comfortable viewing facilities for you and your family to spend time with your loved one. Alternatively, we can easily arrange for the casket to be transferred to your home or marae in the days before the final ceremony.


Embalming is provided to disinfect, present, and preserve the deceased during the funeral period. It also provides a more natural appearance of the deceased, to ensure that family and friends can have a safe and positive viewing experience, if they decide to view their loved one. Our fully compliant onsite mortuary means your loved one will remain in our care and not be transferred between locations.

All embalming at Howard & Gannon Funerals is carried out by experienced staff and is in accordance with the New Zealand Embalmers Association code of ethics.

If you want any more information on embalming, go to the New Zealand Embalmers Association website at www.nzembalmers.org.nz or give us a call and we can answer any questions you have.

After the funeral

An official New Zealand Death Certificate will be applied for by Howard & Gannon Funerals to the Ministry of Internal Affairs to register the death. This can only be registered on the day of service, and then can take up to a week to be processed and returned to Howard & Gannon Funerals. The original death certificate will then be returned to the family or solicitor, as requested by the family making the arrangements.

The ashes are uplifted from the crematorium by Howard & Gannon Funerals within three working days of the cremation. We will make contact with you in regards to the collection of the ashes.

Financial Arrangements

The funeral account is sent out approximately two weeks from the date of death.

When the settlement of the estate is delayed, families pay the account by the due date and recover the expenses from the estate. The person making the arrangements and signing the authority contract with the funeral director, remains responsible for paying the invoice.

A funeral grant may be available from Work and Income, depending on the deceased’s level of assets and income. If the death was caused by an injury or accident, ACC may be able to help.

We can supply the necessary documentation for you to apply for these grants.

I would just like to convey my appreciation for the magnificent job you did with Dad's funeral. Through your professionalism, poise and grace you made the most difficult of tasks a little easier. You showed infinite patience with family members as well as myself (especially me) during the process.
Needless to say I am one of your biggest fans (I know, just one of the many). On talking to people at and after the funeral I have been singing your praises with the incredible job you did starting from the consultation process through to the catering. In actual fact I had people coming up to me to say "that's the best funeral they had been to" (if there is such a thing?). In closing I'd just like to say a very big Thank You. NT

"Thank you very much for the kindness you showed to myself and my sister when our mum died in June. We appreciated your professionalism and the way nothing was a problem to you. Kind regards and keep on with what you do so well."

"You couldn’t be more thoughtful, and I couldn’t be more grateful. The words say it all - you are an awesome team. Everything you did for us was faultless."

"Thank you for your support and everything you have done for us through a ‘somewhat challenging time’. Your professionalism, honesty, and your wonderful kindness was very much appreciated by us, and simply just being there for us is just what we needed."

"At a time of hurt and pain, I was professionally assisted and advised with real compassion by all of your staff. Howard & Gannon is a 21st century funeral parlour operated by loving and caring people."

Jk Vm Rc Jl Bc